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GREEN > Historical ruins destroyed in Beşiktaş’s stadium in central Istanbul

Elif İnce ISTANBUL – Radikal

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Archaeologists made reports and took photos of the ruins and museum officials said destroying the archaeological site was illegal and the construction should be suspended immediately. DHA photo

Archaeologists made reports and took photos of the ruins and museum officials said destroying the archaeological site was illegal and the construction should be suspended immediately. DHA photo

Historical ruins including a vaulted ceiling were intentionally destroyed yesterday with heavy construction equipment in İnönü Stadium, which is undergoing reconstruction, despite the Istanbul Archaeology Museums’ appointment of archaeologists to inspect the area.

The legendary İnönü Stadium of Beşiktaş, one of Turkey’s biggest football clubs, in the Beşiktaş district along the Bosphorus shore is being replaced with a more modern and lucrative one.

The symbolic beginning of the old stadium’s demolition was marked June 2 when the club’s chairman, Fikret Orman, smashed the first chunk of concrete from the north end’s third tier.

The stadium is being demolished and a new one will be rebuilt 23 meters north of its current location.

However some historical ruins were demolished yesterday, despite the Istanbul Archaeology Museum’s previous notices that construction should stop if any artifacts were found.

Archaeologists made reports and took photos of the ruins and museum officials said destroying the archaeological site was illegal and the construction should be suspended immediately.

The report was sent to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and regional Board of Protection of Cultural Assets; a response from the board to stop the construction.

The same board had issued a verdict May 7 that the construction would stop if any historical ruins were found in the area.

The concept of the new stadium includes new stands. The historical southern façade and western main entrance gate are to be preserved according to the project.

Inside, a colonnade is to encircle the new stands, supporting a cable roof with a membrane cover.

Under the new structure a 600-car parking lot for VIPs is planned.

Debt-ridden Beşiktaş had been planning to renovate İnönü to turn the venue into a more lucrative one, similar to projects by its rivals Galatasaray and Fenerbahçe in recent years.

July/24/2013

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READER COMMENTS

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Brian Irlanda

7/28/2013 12:18:26 PM

OK. This should not have happened before a survey was made, but there needs to some balance. Just like in Dublin, every time we dig a hole we find archaeological artefacts and structures of either stone age, pre-Christian, early Christian or the Viking age. If we stopped for everything there would be no construction anywhere and we would still be living in mud huts!

mara mcglothin

7/25/2013 9:36:50 PM

Always getting the wagon before buying the horse. Always burying before performing an autopsy. Same old same old. Making a construction decision before the planning commission weighing in and so on. Who is surprised at all. I am sure RTE already feels that Istanbul has enough historic sites.

Ferit

7/25/2013 1:39:11 AM

If only people would realize how well it would be to boycott all football stadiums. As appealing as football is, it is clear it also such an easy money grab for the ruling class, including the advertisement industry, corrupt construction firms, and match fixers. Unfortunately, most of the supporters of the local clubs would rather put football in front of politics. Wake up.

Can Lamberoglu

7/24/2013 9:22:47 PM

K M, why would the Saudis come here if we offer a desert, without alcohol, with gift-wrapped women? They'd be cheaper off vacationing at home. Or they go to Thailand, I suppose.

K M

7/24/2013 5:48:09 PM

Erdogas'd Turkey: no historical sites for the high-end tourist, no booze for the low-end tourist, and yet a tourist dependent economy. I suppose it's turning it into a desert for the Saudis?
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